As the carousel / horrorshow that is the Jackets' goaltending injuries continues, the Springfield Falcons announced this morning that veteran netminder Manny Legace has signed an AHL professional tryout agreement. Yesterday, when our own Dan P. talked to GM Scott Howson, he stated that Allen York would practice today before being evaluated and, if healthy, would then be called up to back up Steve Mason while Mark Dekanich and Curtis Sanford recouperate.
Legace is likely coming in to stand in as the backup for Paul Dainton, providing veteran experience while Dainton and/or Danny Taylor take the majority of the load, much as Curtis Sanford was expected to do for York. (Hockey is a funny old game sometimes.)
It's actually a bit of a homecoming for Legace, who started his professional career with the Falcons in 1994, and played there through the '97-98 season before breaking in with the LA Kings the following year.
As an NHL level netminder, Legace's glory days are behind him, with his the debate about when he peaked split between a stellar 2005-2006 campaign in Detroit where he went 37-8-3 with 7 shutouts as Dominick Hasek's backup and a 27-25-8 season as the starting netminder in St. Louis during the 2007-2008 season that earned him an appearance at the NHL All Star Game. Since that time Legace has dipped, eventually losing the starting job in St. Louis, before splitting time between the AHL, NHL, and DEL for the last three seasons. He also appeared in one game earlier this year for the San Antonio Rampage on another tryout where he had a 3.00 GAA and a .875 save percentage.
Right now, I'd call Legace the backup-backup-backup plan, but it might still be good to have a veteran voice in Springfield to help out, even if I'd call him getting back to a starting job extremely unlikely.